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Dental Implants

Dental implants are changing the way people live. They are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth which look, feel and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything. Knowing that dental implants appear natural and that they preserve facial contours, patients with dental implants can smile with confidence.

What are Dental Implants?

The implants themselves are tiny titanium posts, which are inserted into the jawbone where teeth are missing. These metal anchors act as tooth root substitutes. They are surgically placed into the jawbone. The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. Small posts are then attached to the implant, and protrude through the gums. These posts provide stable anchors for artificial replacement teeth.

Implants also help preserve facial structure, preventing the bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing.

The Surgical Procedure

Using the most recent advances in dental implant technology, the doctors of MGM Dental are able to place single stage implants. These implants do not require a second procedure to uncover them but do require a minimum of six weeks of healing time before placing artificial teeth on them. There are even situations where the implants can be placed at the same time as a tooth extraction further minimizing the number of surgical procedures. Advances in dental implant technology have made it possible in select cases, to extract teeth, and place implants with crowns at one visit. This process, called "immediate loading" greatly simplifies the surgical process.

Who actually performs the implant placement?

Implants are a team effort between an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon and a Restorative Dentist. While the doctors of MGM Dental and the oral surgeon perform the actual implant surgery, and initial tooth extractions and bone grafting if necessary, the doctors of MGM Dental fits and makes the permanent prosthesis. Your dentist will also make any temporary prosthesis needed during the implant process.

What types of prostheses are available?

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A single prosthesis (crown) is used to replace one missing tooth - each prosthetic tooth attaches to its own implant. A partial prosthesis (fixed bridge) can replace two or more teeth and may require only two or three implants. A complete dental prosthesis (fixed bridge) replaces all of the teeth in your upper or lower jaw. The number of implants varies depending upon which type of complete prosthesis (removable or fixed) is recommended or desired. A removable prosthesis (overdenture) attaches to a bar or ball and socket attachment, whereas a fixed one is permanent and removable only by the dentist.

Our doctors perform in-office implant surgery in a hospital-style operating suite, thus optimizing the level of sterility. Even extensive reconstruction including bone grafting from the jaw, hip or tibia can be accomplished in our operating suite on an out-patient basis. Inpatient hospital implant surgery is for patients who have special medical or anesthetic needs.

Why dental implants?

Once you learn about dental implants, you finally realize there is a way to improve your life. When you lose several teeth - whether it's a new situation or something you have lived with for years - chances are you have never become fully accustomed to losing such a vital part of yourself.

A Swedish scientist and orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Per-Ingvar Branemark, developed this concept for oral rehabilitation more than thirty-five years ago. With his pioneering research, Dr. Branemark opened the door to a lifetime of renewed comfort and self-confidence for millions of individuals facing the frustration and embarrassment of tooth loss.

Why would you select dental implants over more traditional types of restorations?

There are several reasons: Why sacrifice the structure of surrounding good teeth to bridge a space? In addition, removing a denture or a "partial" denture at night may be inconvenient. Furthermore, dentures that slip can be uncomfortable and embarrassing.

Are you a candidate for implants?

If you are considering implants, your mouth must be examined thoroughly and your medical and dental history reviewed. If your mouth is not ideal for implants, ways of improving outcome, such as bone grafting, may be recommended.

What type of anesthesia is used?

The majority of dental implants and bone grafting can be performed in the office under local anesthesia, with or without general anesthesia or i.v. sedation.

Do implants need special care?

Once the implants are in place, they will serve you well for many years if you take care of them and keep your mouth healthy. This means taking the time to maintain good oral hygiene (brushing and flossing) and keeping regular appointments with your dental specialists.

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Video Information

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